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Church Bulletin: November 16, 2014

posted Nov 17, 2014, 8:06 AM by Saint Raphael of Brooklyn Antiochian Orthodox Church
November 16, 2014- St. Matthew the Evangelist
This Week's Services and Events

November 17, Monday
        + Teen SOYO Dinner and Movie Night, 6:30PM

November 18, Tuesday
        + Parish Council meeting, 7:00PM

November 19, Wednesday
        +  Akathist, 7:00PM,

November 20, Thursday
        + Vesperal Liturgy for Entrance of the Theotokos, 6:00PM

November 21, Friday
        + Matins, 8:30AM
        + Father's Office Hours, 9:30AM-11:30AM

November 22, Saturday
        + Fr. Ken DeVoie talk at Iowa City Public library, 2:00PM
        + 9th Hour/Great Vespers, 6:00PM

November 23, Sunday,
        +Matins, 8:45AM
        + Divine Liturgy, 10:00AM, followed by fellowship hour and Sunday School
Upcoming Events and Announcements   

Return Your Pledge Packets ASAP-
       The Parish Council has distributed information on making regular financial pledges or tithes for 2015.  Copies will be handed out at church and mailed, and extra copies will be available in the narthex to take home and look at.  Please look over the information, pray about your giving to St. Raphael Church, and if you are able to give, return your pledge form to church as soon as you are able.  Prompt return of this information greatly helps the parish council set a realistic budget for the upcoming year.  Please return to our treasurer Jeremy or Parish Council Chairperson Matthew.

       Congratulations to Rezo Gvarjaladze and Alli Rockwell on the birth of their daughter Inga Renee on November 10.  Mother and daughter are both well.  May God grant Inga many years!

Thank You!-
       Thank you to Irakliy Surguladze for using Irakli Tskhakaia's design (thank you Irakli!) and constructing and installing our new cross on the front of the building, above the center doors.  We blessed the cross at the end of liturgy today.

Teen SOYO Events-
       Our teens will meet for dinner and a movie at 6:30PM on November 17.
Parish Council Meeting-
       The November parish council meeting is scheduled for November 18 at 7:00PM.

Vesperal Liturgy for Entrance of the Theotokos-
       We will mark the Feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos in the Temple with Vesperal Liturgy at 6PM on November 20.

Orthodox Christianity? An Evangelical's Journey-
       Fr. Ken DeVoie, from our archdiocese's Department of Missions and Evangelism, will be with us the weekend of November 22-23.  He will be giving a talk at the Iowa City Public Library (Meeting Room A) at 2:00PM on November 22.  His talk is titled, "Orthodox Christianity?  An Evangelical's Journey."  Invite your friends and help spread the word.  Fliers advertising the event are available in the narthex.  Fr. Ken will also be with us for vespers, matins and Liturgy.  He will address us as a parish during coffee hour on November 23, speaking to us about our mission to be outreach-minded.

St. Maria's Bread House-
        We have now been officially okayed to use the United Christian and Baptist Church's building for one public event and two Wednesday Vespers per month! Please pray for continued favor with their board and for our board as we plan. For more information about us, go to our website at stmariasbreadhouse.org. Please also like us on Facebook ( www.facebook.com/stmariasbreadhouse ) and share these sites with friends and family. For more info, contact Amy Spencer at kalonabreadhouse@gmail.com.

Nativity Fast Has Begun-
       In preparation for the Great Feast of the Nativity of the Lord, we begin a time of fasting, lasting 40 days, on November 15.  The standard for this fast is a little less stringent than the Lenten fast.  We abstain from meat, eggs and dairy, wine and oil, but wine and oil are permitted on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and fish, wine and oil are permitted on Saturdays and Sundays.  As fasting goes hand-in-hand with repentance, this is a good time to schedule a confession with Fr. Ignatius.  If you have any questions about confession or fasting, please see Fr. Ignatius.

Beowulf Book Discussion-
       Several of us are reading the epic Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf and will be discussing it on Sunday, November 23, from 7:00PM-8:30PM at Lori and Robert's home.  If you are interested in participating, let Lori know.

Religion and Culture of the Slavs Class at UI-
       Irina Kostina is offering "Religion and Culture of the Slavs" during the Spring 2015 semester at the University of Iowa.  Her decription of the class follows: This course covers the history of Russian Orthodoxy, highlights Russian Christianization, the creation of marvelous icons, monasteries, canons of faith, historical and literary events that have shaped the mentality and character of the Russian people through the centuries.  For more information, email Irina at irina-kostina@uiowa.edu

Save the Date!-
       Our annual Voter's Meeting will take place following liturgy on Sunday, December 7.  Please plan to attend and participate.  More information will follow in the near future.

Orthodox Christian Fellowship College Conference and Real Break-
       The annual OCF College Conference is taking place at the Antiochian Village in Western Pennsylvania from December 27-30.  To learn more or to register, go to: http://www.ocf.net/college-conference/.  One week mission trips, known as Real Break are scheduled for Spring 2015 to both domestic and international destinations.  To learn more about these opportunities, go to: http://www.ocf.net/real-break-2015/
Enthronement of Metropolitan Joseph-
       Information on the Enthronement weekend services in Brooklyn, NY December 5-7 can be found at: http://www.antiochian.org/enthronement

Bible Bowl and Oratorical Festival-
       Each year, our diocese offers two different competitions for teens (and one for adults), held at the Parish Life Conference.  The 2015 Parish Life Conference will be held in Grand Rapids, MI in June.  Teens from our parish have participated in and done very well in the Bible Bowl is recent years, winning trophies each time they have competed.  Instead of focusing on one book of the Bible, the 2015 Bible Bowl will focus on the life of our patron, St. Raphael of Brooklyn, as found in the book "Our Father Among the Saints Raphael Bishop of Brooklyn: Good Shepherd of the Lost Sheep in America" published by Antakya Press.  This theme was chosen by Metropolitan Philip before his repose, because 2015 is the 100th anniversary of the repose of St. Raphael.  Fr. Ignatius challenges teens (ages 13-19) to form a team and study and compete.  Adults can form a team as well.  We can win this at the diocesan level and go on to compete on the archdiocesan level!  In addition, if giving speeches is your thing (teens only), consider writing a speech for the Oratorical Festival, the theme of which is also the life of St. Raphael.  Information is posted in the narthex.  Talk to Fr. Ignatius if you would like to learn more.

Thoughts on Stewardship and Giving-    
       "Saint Nicholas’ life is one of the foremost examples of Christian stewardship. One well-known story of stewardship from the life of Saint Nicholas tells us how Nicholas saved a young woman from slavery. Her father, a widowed nobleman, had fallen into poverty. Although his three daughters had many suitors, they could not marry because he was too poor to provide them with the dowry that a bride was expected to bring to her marriage. The eldest daughter decided to sell herself as a slave in order to raise money for her sisters’ dowries. Nicholas heard about the women’s circumstance. Secretly, in the dark of the night, he lowered a small bag of gold through an open window in the eldest daughter’s room. With the dowry that Nicholas had provided, she was able to marry. On two other nights, Nicholas secretly provided the two remaining daughters with dowries of their own."   Word, February, 2003, "Stewardship," Nick Hathaway    

Next Sunday's Gospel Reading-
        St. John Chrysostom urges Christians to preview the upcoming Sunday Gospel reading so that it may be fresh in your minds when you hear it next

The reading for Sunday, November 23 is: The Lord spoke this parable: “The land of a rich man brought forth plentifully; and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’  And he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns, and build larger ones; and there I will store all my grain and my goods.  And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; take your ease, eat, drink, be merry.’  But God said to him, ‘Fool!  This night your soul is required of you; and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’  So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”  As He said this, Jesus called out, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”  (Luke 12:16-21)

Pray for our Catechumens-
       Please keep our catechumens: Ilya Buchkin, Rob Bergenstock and Daniel Welsh in your prayers as they prepare to be sacramentally joined to the Orthodox Church.
Keep Praying for Kidnapped Orthodox Bishops in Syria-
       Since April 22, 2013, the Orthodox Metropolitan of Aleppo, Metropolitan Paul, and the Syriac Metropolitan of Aleppo, Youhanna, have been in captivity and have not heard from.  Please pray for their well being and release and also pray for their captors as well.  One priest is also missing, having been kidnapped. 

Do You Have a Prayer Request?
        Please give it to Fr. Ignatius and he will distribute it by email to all those on the Prayer Chain. If you wish to join the Prayer Chain, please let Fr. Ignatius

Coffee Hour-
       The St. John the Baptist team will bring food to share during coffee hour, and clean up the fellowship hall on November 23.

Choir Leadership-
       Lori Branch will lead the choir on November 22-23.

Food for Thought-

I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.

C S Lewis